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Subclinical atherosclerosis in childhood can be evaluated by carotid intima-media thickness, which is considered a surrogate marker for atherosclerotic disease in adulthood. The aims of this study were to evaluate carotid intima-media thickness and, to investigate associated factors.
Cross-sectional study with children and adolescents with congenital heart disease (CHD). Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics were assessed. Subclinical atherosclerosis was evaluated by carotid intima-media thickness. Cardiovascular risk factors, such as physical activity, screen time, passive smoke, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, waist circumference, dietary intake, lipid parameters, glycaemia, and C-reactive protein, were also assessed. Factors associated with carotid intima-media thickness were analysed using multiple logistic regression.
The mean carotid intima-media thickness was 0.518 mm and 46.7% had subclinical atherosclerosis (carotid intima-media thickness ≥ 97th percentile). After adjusting for confounding factors, cyanotic CHD (odds ratio: 0.40; 95% confidence interval: 0.20; 0.78), cardiac surgery (odds ratio: 3.17; 95% confidence interval: 1.35; 7.48), and be hospitalised to treat infections (odds ratio: 1.92; 95% confidence interval: 1.04; 3.54) were associated with subclinical atherosclerosis.
Clinical characteristics related to CHD were associated with subclinical atherosclerosis. This finding suggests that the presence of CHD itself is a risk factor for subclinical atherosclerosis. Therefore, the screen and control of modifiable cardiovascular risk factors should be made early and intensively to prevent atherosclerosis.
The description of the growth of the Japanese quails is necessary to characterize the genetic potential of these birds raised in different countries. Thus, the aim of this study was to describe the genetic potential of Japanese quails by conducting a meta-analysis considering studies conducted in different countries. Only data about the subspecies Coturnix coturnix japonica were considered; studies regarding Coturnix coturnix coturnix were not examined. The criteria investigated were BW (W), age (t), year of publication and location of the study. Each set of genetic material within a publication was coded as one study. The Gompertz function was used to interpret the growth of laying quails; thus, each study was represented by Gompertz parameters. The W and t data were applied to estimate the values of Gompertz growth parameters, including BW at maturity (Wm), BW at birth (Wi), maturity rate (B) and inflection point (IP). The age at which the maximum growth rate was achieved (t*) was calculated considering the parameters Wm, Wi and B. To estimate these parameters, random regression was used to randomize the parameter Wm. The parameters estimated for each assay were used in exploratory, grouping, and principal component analyses. The values of Wi ranged from 4.1 to 11.6 g. The values of B ranged from 0.0393 to 0.1039/day, and consequently, the values of t* and IP ranged from 14 to 31 days and 9.21 to 31.03 g, respectively. These results show that there is considerable variability in the growth potential of Japanese quails. To better understand this variation, two groups were examined: Brazil and other countries, according to the grouping of Wi, Wm, B and t*; parameter B was the variable that presented the highest specificity, indicating that both groups modified the maturity rate. For the principal component analysis, the year of publication showed a relationship with the growth parameters but only for studies performed in Brazil. For studies carried out in other countries, the changes in growth parameters were not related to the year of publication. In Brazilian studies, there was a decrease in the maturity rate, but the weight at maturity was higher. Therefore, it appears that different strategies of genetic selection were adopted in Brazil compared to other countries.
Persistent methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection in cystic fibrosis (CF) patients has been associated with a more rapid decline in lung function, increased hospitalisation and mortality. The aim of this study was to evaluate the clonal relationships among 116 MRSA isolates from 12 chronically colonised CF pediatric patients over a 6-year period in a Rio de Janeiro CF specialist centre. Isolates were characterised by antimicrobial resistance, SCCmec type, presence of Panton-Valentine Leukocidin (PVL) genes and grouped according to DNA macrorestriction profile by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) and spa gene type. High resistance rates were detected for erythromycin (78%) and ciprofloxacin (50%) and SCCmec IV was the most common type (72.4%). Only 8.6% of isolates were PVL positive. High genetic diversity was evident by PFGE (39 pulsotypes) and of nine that were identified spa types, t002 (53.1%) and t539 (14.8%) were the most prevalent. We conclude that the observed homogeneity of spa types within patients over the study period demonstrates the persistence of such strain lineages throughout the course of chronic lung infection.
This research communication describes the influence of diet, mammary quarter position and milking process on the temperature of teats and udder of cows fed diets containing different lipid sources. Five primiparous cows were fed diets containing cottonseed, sunflower seed, soybeans or soybean oil as a source of lipids and a reference diet without the inclusion of lipid sources in a 5 × 5 Latin Square design. Milk yield was determined in the last five days of each period. Milk samples were collected for SCC analysis on the last two days of each experimental period. The images of the mammary gland were obtained using an infrared camera and were analyzed with appropriate computer software. Milk yield was 14.8% higher for cows fed soybeans as a source of lipids. Diets and somatic cell counts did not influence the temperature of teats and udder. The milking process reduced the temperature of teats and udder by 0.79°C. Rear teats and rear quarters had higher surface temperatures than front teats and fore quarters. Changes in temperature of teats and mammary quarters occurred as a function of the milking process and quarter position. However, the diet and the SCC did not influence the temperature of teats and mammary quarters in this experiment.
Milk production is an important economic and social activity in Brazil. Failure to meet institutional and market demands for quality and sustainability has led farmers, particularly small-scale farmers, to leave agriculture. The aim of this study was to assess and compare the sustainability of dairy farms in Paraná, Brazil. A semi-structured questionnaire was administered to 75 dairy farm operators. Sustainability indicators were generated on the basis of economic, environmental and social data using exploratory factor analysis. Factor scores were subjected to hierarchical clustering, which resulted in the formation of three groups of dairy farms. Groups 1, 2 and 3 had high, intermediate and low levels of sustainability, respectively. Group 1 comprised large-scale dairy farms with high productivity. Dairy farms with intermediate sustainability (group 2) had medium production capacity, and farms with low sustainability (group 1) had the smallest production scale and capacity. Large-scale dairy farms have greater economic, environmental and social sustainability and are, therefore, more likely to survive in the medium and long term.
Research has shown that PTSD is prevalent among firefighters and police forces and that Quality of Life (QoL) is seriously compromised in individuals suffering from PTSD. However, QoL studies with these professionals are scarce. This study results from a screening program held by the Portuguese Red Cross (PRC) aiming to analyze predictors of QoL. Participants were 95 firefighters and municipal police officers. They answered the Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Checklist (PCL-5) in order to evaluate the prevalence of PTSD symptoms, as well as measures of social support (3-Item Oslo Social Support Scale) and QoL (EUROHIS-QOL-8). From the results, there were no group differences regarding total PTSD, social support or QoL and 10% of participants reported enough symptoms to PTSD diagnostic. Social Support and PTSD explained 25% of QoL variance, PTSD symptoms explaining 10% (negative beta) and, in the second step, social support explained 15%. The results suggest that it would be important to include QoL as an outcome measure in clinical and research work in these populations, with special attention to PTSD and social support.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.
The increase of contact between natural and rural areas is prominent in Brazil, due to agricultural activities and concern with the environmental conservation. In this context, domestic animals, wild fauna and humans are exposed to mutual exchange of parasites, microorganisms and diseases. We studied tick parasitism of wild carnivores and domestic dogs, and the environmental of questing ticks, in extensive cattle ranch areas intermingled with natural vegetation, and in a natural reserve, both in a region of Cerrado biome, Midwestern Brazil. From 2008 to 2015, we inspected 119 wild carnivores from nine species, and collected six tick species (Amblyomma sculptum, Amblyomma ovale, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma tigrinum, Dermacentor nitens and Rhipicephalus microplus). The most numerous and infested hosts were Cerdocyon thous, Lycalopex vetulus, Chrysocyon brachyurus, Puma concolor and Conepatus amazonicus. From 139 domestic dogs, we collected A. sculptum, Rhipicephalus sanguineus and R. microplus. From vegetation, samplings resulted in A. sculptum, A. dubitatum, A. ovale, Amblyomma rotundatum and R. microplus, with dominance of A. sculptum. Domestics and wild animals presented high overlapping of infestations by A. sculptum, a generalist and anthropophilic tick species. This tick is the most important vector of the Brazilian spotted fever, a lethal human disease. This fact elicits attention and requires efforts to monitor the presence of pathogens vectored by ticks circulating in this type of agroecosystem, including in other regions of the Brazil, because the most of the natural vegetation remaining have been increasingly immersed in pastures and agricultural matrix.
Accumulating evidence from preclinical and clinical studies indicates that prenatal exposure to stress impairs the development of the offspring brain and facilitates the emergence of mental illness. This study aims to describe the impact of prenatal restraint stress on cognition and exploration to an unfamiliar environment at adulthood in an outbred strain of mice.
Late pregnant mice were exposed to restraint stress and adult offspring (60 days of age) behaviours were assessed in the object recognition task and open field test.
Prenatal stress (PNS) impaired new object recognition in male and female mice. Importantly, the learning deficits in female PNS mice were linked to their estrous cycle. Actually, PNS females in metestrus/diestrus but not in proestrus/estrus phases displayed recognition deficits compared to controls. Concerning locomotion in an unfamiliar environment, male but not female PNS mice displayed significant increase, but showed no differences in the distance travelled within the centre zone of the arena.
Present findings support the view that maternal restraint-stress during late pregnancy impairs recognition memory in both male and female offspring, and in females, this cognitive deficit is dependent on the estrous cycle phase. Ultimately, these data reinforce that PNS is an aetiological component of psychiatric disorders associated with memory deficits.
The giant Hii region W 31 hosts the populous star cluster W 31-CL and others projected on or in the surroundings. The most intriguing object is the stellar cluster SGR 1806-20, which appears to be related to a Luminous Blue Variable (LBV)—a luminous supergiant star. We used the deep VVV J-, H-, and
-band photometry combined with 2MASS data in order to address the distance and other physical and structural properties of the clusters W 31-CL, BDS 113, and SGR 1806-20. Field-decontaminated photometry was used to analyse colour–magnitude diagrams (CMDs) and stellar radial density profiles, using procedures that our group has developed and employed in previous studies. We conclude that the clusters W 31-CL and BDS 113 are located at 4.5 and 4.8 kpc and have ages of 0.5 and 1 Myr, respectively. This result, together with the pre-main sequence distribution in the CMD, characterises them as members of the W 31 complex. The present photometry detects the stellar content, addressed in previous spectroscopic classifications, in the direction of the cluster SGR 1806-20, including the LBV, Wolf–Rayet, and foreground stars. We derive an age of
and a distance of
. The cluster is extremely absorbed, with
. The present results indicate that SGR 1806-20 is more distant by a factor 1.8 with respect to the W 31 complex, and thus not physically related to it.
The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
Cerrado sensu stricto (a physiognomy of the Cerrado domain, the Brazilian savanna) is subject to the annual occurrence of fire. Data on the epiphytic community in this physiognomy is scarce, as is evaluation of the influence of fire on its structure and composition. The aim of this study was to describe the structure of the vascular epiphyte community and its relationships with phorophytes in the Cerrado domain, Southeast Region of Brazil, after the passage of fire. We found the greatest abundance of epiphytes in the upper strata (65% of the individuals occurring above 3 m in height) and the dominance of three generalist species (Tillandsia streptocarpa, T. recurvata and Epiphyllum phyllanthus), suggesting that fire has an influence on the structure and composition of the epiphytic community.
The enrichment of meat with selenium is important to improve the intake of selenium by humans. The effects of supranutritional doses of sodium selenite or selenium-enriched yeast on performance, carcass characteristics and meat quality were evaluated using 63 Nellore cattle in a completely randomized design with two sources (sodium selenite and selenium-enriched yeast), three levels (0.3, 0.9 and 2.7 mg Se/kg DM) and control treatment (without addition of selenium). Final body weight (BW), average daily gain, dry matter intake and gain to feed ratio (G : F) at the end of 84 days of supplementation were not influenced by treatments (P>0.05). Values of pH, ribeye area, back fat thickness and marbling score were also not influenced by treatments (
P>0.05). Dressing percentage was greater (P=0.02) in Nellore cattle supplemented with organic Se (58.70%) compared to animals supplemented with inorganic Se (57.94%). Hot carcass weight increased (
P=0.05) with the increasing of Se levels in the diet. Colour, shear force (SF), cooking and drip loss remained unchanged (
P>0.05); however thiobarbituric acid reactive substances was 15.51% higher with inorganic Se compared with organic Se. The selenium concentration in the meat of animals receiving organic selenium was higher (
P<0.001) than that of animals receiving sodium selenite, at all levels (0.3; 0.9 and 2.7 mg/kg DM). The meat of animals receiving 2.7 mg of organic Se/kg of DM presented concentration of 372.7 μg Se/kg in the L.dorsi muscle, and the intake of 150 g of this meat by humans provides approximately 100% of the recommended Se intake (55 μg Se/day for adults). Therefore, the use of supranutritional doses of 2.7 mg Se/kg of DM, regardless of source, is a way of naturally producing selenium-enriched meat without compromising performance, carcass characteristics and quality of Nellore bovine meat.
The constant search for the improvement of the performance of materials of industrial application, evaluated under aspects of weight reduction, greater resistance, greater resistance to wear and better thermal stability, among others, associated with the search for the development of ecologically viable products, that convert the context of environmental degradation in preservation and sustainability, reflects the need to conduct research that results in new materials. The objective of this work is to obtain composites of the AA6061 aluminum alloy reinforced with different contents of coke coal blast-furnace slag by powder metallurgy. The processing of these materials was done by sieving, mixing and compacting powders of reinforced aluminum alloy with 5, 10 and 15% of blast-furnace slag. The cold uniaxial compaction was realized at a pressure of 500MPa. The obtained materials were sintered at 580°C for 3h under inert atmosphere. Unreinforced aluminum alloy samples were also produced. The characterization of the materials was realized by density and hardness measurements and three-point bending tests. The analysis of its microstructure was realized by scanning electron microscopy. As results, the composites presented a homogeneous distribution of the reinforcing particles and also a progressive improvement of the hardness and the bending strength with the increase of the slag content, producing an increase of 79% in hardness and 128% in flexural strength, when compared to the material without reinforcement obtained by the same process. Such results give the coke coal blast-furnace slag a new possibility of exploitation in the metal-mechanical sector, besides contributing with the environmental issue.
Differences in forage nutritive value between morning and afternoon are related to patterns of dehydration and carbohydrate accumulation throughout the day. In this way, management strategies that maximize grazing time during the afternoon could increase forage nutritive value and consequently nutrient intake. The aim of the current experiment was to evaluate the effect of the time of day (06.00 h [designated AM] or 15.00 h [PM]) that cattle are moved to a new paddock on forage nutritive value, grazing behaviour and animal performance of beef cattle on rotationally stocked Marandu palisadegrass (Brachiaria brizantha cv. Marandu Syn. Urochloa brizantha cv. Marandu) pastures. A spring and summer study was conducted in Pirassununga, SP, Brazil from October 2012 to March 2013 (182 days). Treatments were distributed in a randomized complete block design with three replications. Herbage mass, morphological composition, herbage allowance and stocking rates were similar between treatments during spring and summer. Moving animals to a new paddock, regardless of the time of day – 06.00 h (AM) or 15.00 h (PM) – stimulated grazing, modifying the distribution of meals throughout the day. However, compensatory mechanisms among grazing time, bite rate and forage nutritive value throughout the day operated in order to generate similar performance between animals offered a new paddock in the morning or in the afternoon.
The clinical manifestation and course of Leishmania infections depend on factors such as species, virulence and host-immunity. Although trypanosomatids are considered to have clonal propagation, genetic hybridization has produced successful natural hybrid lineages. Hybrids displaying strong selective advantages may have an impact on pathogenesis and the eco-epidemiology of leishmaniasis. Thus, characterization of phenotypic properties of Leishmania hybrids could bring significant insight into the biology, infectivity, pathogenicity and transmission dynamics of these atypical strains. The present study focuses on phenotypic features and survival capacity of Leishmania infantum/Leishmania major hybrid isolates as compared with representative putative parental species, L. infantum and L. major. In vitro assays (growth kinetics, susceptibility to different conditions) and in vivo infection (parasite detection and histopathological alterations) showed that hybrids present higher growth capacity and decreased susceptibility to reactive oxygen species. Furthermore, evaluation of infected spleen tissue suggests that hybrids induce a stronger immune reaction than their putative parents, leading to the development of white pulp hyperplasia in B-lymphocyte compartments. Overall, these hybrids have shown high plasticity in terms of their general behaviour within the different phenotypic parameters, suggesting that they might have acquired genetic features conferring different mechanisms to evade host cells.
The objective of the current study was to evaluate the effects of sugarcane and maize silage mixture v. maize silage in diets of Holstein cows and investigate performance under two environmental conditions. The cows were placed in freestalls, with individuals and stalls assigned to one of four treatments according to a replicated 4 × 4 Latin square design with 20-day periods divided into 11 days of adaptation (wash-out period) and 9 days of collection. Treatments were arranged in a 2 × 2 × 2 factorial design: total diets (maize silage (MS-based diet), the roughage mixture (RM-based diet, sugarcane : maize silage, 500 : 500 g/kg DM) plus concentrate); environmental conditions (with (W) and without (Wo) fan and nebulizers); and measurement times (09.40 and 14.00 h). The temperature and relative humidity was higher at 14.00 h and contributed to increased temperature-humidity index (76.6, W v. 75.9, Wo). Feed dry matter intake (DMI) was similar between diets (20.2 kg/day), but milk production and feed efficiency were lower with RM. Under W conditions, higher fat content and total solids of milk were observed with the RM-based diet, while crude protein and lactose were higher with MS. The Wo conditions increased body surface temperature (BS) in cows fed MS. The rectal temperature (RT) was higher with RM. The BS, RT and respiratory rate were higher at 14.00 h (34.9, 38.6 °C and 58.2 breaths/min) than at 09.40 h. The RM-based diet maintained DMI and milk composition, but not milk production. The use of the cooling system led to higher DMI and feed N efficiency use.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of incubating semen for different periods (90, 270 or 450 min) with or without Trolox® (100 or 150 µM) on the quality of sperm from Saimiri collinsi. Sperm motility, vigour, and plasma membrane integrity (PMI) were evaluated in both fresh semen and semen incubated for different time periods, i.e. 90, 270 or 450 min of incubation. Supplementation of semen extender with Trolox® 100 µM improved sperm motility, vigour and PMI for up to 270 min of incubation.
Reducing the risk of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) transmission is still a public health priority. The development of effective control strategies relies on the quantification of the effects of prophylactic and therapeutic measures in disease incidence. Although several assays can be used to estimate HIV incidence, these estimates are limited by the poor performance of these assays in distinguishing recent from long-standing infections. To address such limitation, we have developed an assay to titrate p24-specific IgG3 antibodies as a marker of recent infection. The assay is based on a recombinant p24 protein capable to detect total IgG antibodies in sera using a liquid micro array and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Subsequently, the assay was optimised to detect and titrate anti-p24 IgG3 responses in a panel of sequential specimens from seroconverters over 24 months. The kinetics of p24-specific IgG3 titres revealed a transient peak in the 4 to 5-month period after seroconversion. It was followed by a sharp decline, allowing infections with less than 6 months to be distinguished from older ones. The developed assay exhibited a mean duration of recent infection of 144 days and a false-recent rate of ca. 14%. Our findings show that HIV-1 p24-specific IgG3 titres can be used as a tool to evaluate HIV incidence in serosurveys and to monitor the efficacy of vaccines and other transmission control strategies.
Minerals are limiting factors in animal production, and the knowledge of mineral requirements for livestock is crucial to the success of a commercial enterprise. Hair sheep may have different mineral requirements than those presents by the international committees. A study was carried to evaluate the net calcium (Ca), phosphorus (P), magnesium (Mg), sodium (Na), potassium (K), zinc (Zn), iron (Fe), manganese (Mn) and copper (Cu) requirements for the growth and maintenance of Brazilian Somali lambs. A total of 48 hair lambs (13.5±1.8 kg) aged 60±15 days were allocated to individual pens. Eight animals were slaughtered at the beginning of the experiment to serve as a reference group to estimate initial empty BW (EBW) and initial body composition. The remaining lambs (n=40) were assigned to a completely randomized design with eight replications in five levels of metabolizable energy (ME; 4.93, 8.65, 9.41, 10.12 and 11.24 MJ/kg DM). When the lambs of a given treatment reached an average BW of 28 kg, they were slaughtered. Initial body composition was used to calculate the retention of minerals. Mineral body composition was fit using a logarithmic equation in the form of a nonlinear model. The maintenance requirements were estimated from regressions of mineral retention in the empty body on mineral intake. The body mineral concentration decreased in lambs with a BW ranging from 15 to 30 kg. The net mineral requirements (100 g/day of average daily gain (ADG)) decreased from 0.52 to 0.51 g for Ca, 0.28 to 0.23 g for P, 0.02 to 0.02 g for Mg, 0.09 to 0.08 g for Na, 0.11 to 0.09 g for K, 1.30 to 1.08 mg for Zn, 3.77 to 3.22 mg for Fe, 0.08 to 0.06 mg for Mn and 0.09 to 0.08 mg for Cu when BW increased from 15 to 30 kg. The daily net requirements for maintenance per kilogram of BW were 30.13 mg of Ca, 27.58 mg of P, 1.26 mg of Mg, 4.12 mg of Na, 8.11 mg of K, 0.133 mg of Zn, 0.271 mg of Fe, 0.002 mg of Mn and 0.014 mg of Cu. The results of this study indicate that the net mineral requirements for weight gain and maintenance in Brazilian Somali lambs are different than the values that are commonly recommended by the main evaluation systems for feed and nutritional requirements for sheep. These results for the nutritional requirements of minerals may help to optimize mineral supply for hair sheep.